Designing Denver: ‘Design Incubator’ Nurtures Local Talents

Photo Courtesy of Denver Design Incubator

Creative juices are continually flowing at the local Denver Design Incubator.

A workshop I recently attended opened my eyes to the talent and resources available to local fashion designer hopefuls.

Kristen LittleJohn-Lasker sits on the board of directors for the Denver Design Incubator (DDI), and says the organization “really helped me grow leaps and bounds, since becoming a Designer-In-Residence back in July of 2011.”

The Denver Design Incubator strives to keep the creativity and fashion talent thriving in Colorado by providing industry standards and professional knowledge to local designers.

“As of right now Denver is in its nurturing stages for the apparel design world and we are slowly building businesses to keep this creativity in Colorado,” LittleJohn-Lasker said.

An underlying characteristic of the DDI is transforming a designer enthusiast into an entrepreneur and dreams into sustainable businesses. The camaraderie among fellow members is cherished, especially when resources are scarce within the city.

The DDI supports newcomers through the ins and outs of the fashion industry.

“We are always here for local designers and want to reassure them that they have the abilities to build this industry up to its highest potential,” LittleJohn Lasker said.

The DDI offers summer workshops for fashion production. These workshops will immerse you in the world of fashion.

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Photo Courtesy of Denver Design Incubator
Photo Courtesy of Denver Design Incubator
Photo Courtesy of Denver Design Incubator

After attending the last workshop on “Scheduling a Fashion Line,” I had the ability to speak fashion lingo with local designers and professionals.

Scheduling a fashion line takes an intense amount of planning and organization. The workshop provided designers a month-by-month schedule of deadlines and important steps in the process that should not be overlooked.

To provide an idea of the wealth of knowledge the DDI encompasses, below is an example of just the first month abbreviated process of the “Scheduling a Fashion Line Workshop.”

  • Develop sourcing procedures
  • Create color palette and trends based on target market
  • Begin designing concepts
  • Discover how you best work (i.e. drawing or illustration)
  • Merchandise design concepts
  • Decide which pieces will work for launch
  • Revisit/Redesign/Finalize
  • Create logo labels, graphics and trims
  • Address trial and error

Each subject was discussed in depth and catered to the individual’s product design from the perspective of jewelry, legging and sportswear designers.

The coordinators provided expertise and personalized feedback to each individual designer’s schedule.

The following workshops are offered for the remainder of July:

  • July 20, 2013Patternmaking II: Draping – $30 (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.)
  • July 27, 2013Fashion Illustration – $25 (10 a.m. to 12 p.m.)

The DDI motivates and inspires up-and-coming designers to pursue and develop their fashion business, while at the same time allowing local designers to connect.

“I view this place as the epicenter for building an apparel industry here in Denver.”— Kristen LittleJohn-Lasker

For more information about the Denver Design Incubator visit



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